Monique Barbut, a French national, is the former Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Chairperson of the GEF since August 2006. She was appointed by a unanimous decision of the GEF Council on June 2006.
During her tenure and following its fourth replenishment at a level of $3.13 billion, she has undertaken a revitalization of the GEF organization to make it a more effective, responsive and results-based institution.
In November 2008, Barbut was reappointed by the GEF Council for another three-year term; in this position she will be leading the next GEF replenishment process.
Prior to joining the GEF, Barbut served as Director of the Division of Technology, Industry and Economics of the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) from September 2003 to July 2006, where she undertook a reorganization of the Division and established a pragmatic approach to ensuring the link between environment and economics and setting up development policies and pilot projects, including in developing countries or countries experiencing critical backgrounds (China and Iraq).
Between 1981 and 2003, Barbut had a long career in different positions at the Agence Française de Développement Group (AFD), the main French public institution for aid in development. During that period, Barbut held different positions related to French aid system particularly project financing activities in the French overseas territories, and activities relating to ex post evaluation. Throughout the 1990s, she became increasingly involved with the issue of financing sustainable development, for the French government and in the international scene in general. In 2003, she was appointed as Executive Director for all Caribbean, Pacific, and Indian Ocean activities.
As a member of the French government delegation to the 1992 Rio Earth Summit, Barbut was a key player in the financing negotiations, and later an active negotiator in the creation of the GEF as well as the French Global Environment Facility (FGEF), to which she was appointed first Chief Executive Officer.
Barbut is married and has three children.